Madison WI — JUNE 24, 2019 —The Board of Directors of the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra (WCO) today announced the appointment of Joe Loehnis as the Orchestra’s next Chief Executive Officer. Loehnis (pronounced LAY-ness) is currently the Executive Director of the First Tee of South Central Wisconsin. He will begin with the WCO on September 1, 2019.

“After an extensive national search managed by the QTI Group, we are excited to welcome Joe Loehnis as our new CEO selected from a highly qualified group of candidates,” said Alan Fish, Chair of the WCO Board of Directors. “As a professional cellist for 15 years combined with his non-profit leadership success in Madison and south-central Wisconsin, Joe brings a perfect blend of management skills, a well-developed fundraising network, a record of strategic planning and execution combined with an engaging personality to the WCO. As we expand our Masterworks concert series to include additional performances at the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts in Brookfield next season, he will grow support in Waukesha County, building on our success in Madison with five Masterworks performances in the Capitol Theater and six Concerts on the Square® each summer.”

Loehnis, a cellist with a degree in music performance from Lawrence University and a former professional golfer, has been Executive Director of the First Tee of South Central Wisconsin since 2013. He led a team of 20 full and part-time staff, expanding services to over 15,000 youth at 13 program locations in south central Wisconsin. He developed strategic collaborations with 20 other youth agencies and exposed the curriculum to a broader, diverse youth population. Loehnis also served as Chair of the advisory board for the national First Tee office. Under his leadership, local fundraising grew by over 250%, and the volunteer base expanded from 60 to 250. He completed an MBA at UW–Madison in 2018 with a concentration in finance.

“I am thrilled to be joining the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra as their next CEO. The orchestra has a rich tradition of bringing world-class music to Madison and the surrounding communities. With a life-long passion for classical music, I am looking forward to expanding the orchestra’s geographic scope in our state, forming collaborations with other arts organizations, and bringing our music to a growing and diverse audience base. I truly believe that orchestras play a vital role in the fabric of a community.”

“I am delighted to welcome Joe to head the WCO team,” said Music Director Andrew Sewell. “He ushers in a new chapter continuing the growth and expansion of the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra. I look forward to working together in the coming seasons.”

The first of WCO’s six Concerts on the Square® will be held Wednesday, June 26. The Orchestra’s indoor season opens Friday, January 24, 2020 in the Capitol Theater at Overture Center for the Arts, and January 25, 2020 at the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts in Brookfield, Wisconsin.